York: Highclere-owned duo are unlikely to run in next month's EborPICTURE: Edward Whitaker (racingpost.com/photos)
Highclere pair look set to miss their Ebor date
THE betting for next month's Betfred Ebor looks certain to be shaken up drastically after two of the leading contenders were ruled out of the race by their connections.
Highclere syndicates looked to have a strong hand in Europe's richest handicap with Conduct and Valiant both holding prominent positions in the betting but managing director Harry Herbert said on Wednesday morning that the pair are unlikely to run at York in the August 25 race.
Conduct was a 12-1 chance with the sponsors having won his two races to date, both in September 2010, but the recent wet weather means connections have run out of time to qualify for the race with the Sir Michael Stoute-trained five-year-old.
Herbert explained: "Conduct had a tendon issue and we had to get a third run into him so that he was qualified to run in a heritage handicap. That was before the end of the last week but due to the bottomless ground we were not able to do that so I think you can rule him out of the Ebor now as he is not qualified."
Highclere also have the William Haggas-trained Valiant entered for the Ebor but he looks set to drop back in trip now.
Herbert continued: "It doesn't look like Valiant is going to run either. We are looking at dropping back to a mile and a quarter and going for a race at Goodwood next week, so at this stage we are unlikely to have any runners in the Ebor."
Valiant had been one of four horses at 10-1 with Betfred, who had Camborne as their 8-1 favourite.
Don't miss Tom Segal's Pricewise verdict on the Ebor in Thursday's Racing Post.